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Silent Enemy

Review

Series : Enterprise Rating : 2
Disc No : 1.3 Episode : 12
First Aired : 16 Jan 2002 Stardate : 1-Sep-51
Director : Winrich Kolbe Year : 2151
Writers : Andre Bormanis Season : 1
Guest Cast :
Guy Siner as Stuart Reed
Jane Carr as Mary Reed
John Rosenfeld as Mark Latrelle
Paula Malcomson as Madeline Reed
Moral :
Preparedness : It's a dangerous universe out there, you have to walk softly and carry a big stick
YATI : Talking about the phase cannon, Reed claims that their power is 500 Gigajoules. He should more properly have said this was their energy output, as the Joule is a unit of energy not power.
Great Moment : Reed thinking that Hoshi was coming on to him when she tried to find out what his favourite food was. The phase cannon blowing up the mountain was also rather cool.
Body Count : Two crewmen were injured by the alien scans.
Factoid : John Rosenfeld, who plays Mark Latrelle in this episode, had a small part as an alien technician in Voyager's "Friendship One" .

Plotline

When a mysterious alien vessel launches repeated attacks on Enterprise, the crew struggle to get the ship's armement up to specs by adding phase cannon. Archer begins to wonder if he should have taken the ship out on her maiden voyage before she was fully ready.

Analysis

An okay episode, but it never really amounts to much. Enterprise is in a bit of a bind when it comes to making alien races, because on the one hand they really can't use species that were first contacted in TOS and TNG (not that that actually stops them from doing it anyway), but on the other hand anything that the NX-01 encounters should be a species TOS and TNG already know well.

So for example it's a little weird that they encounter this alien species here, but then apparently the species is never seen or encountered again over the next two centuries.

Still, it's an interesting idea to have an enemy who you can't really reason with because they literally just completely ignore anything you have to say. And there is a creepy atmosphere. It's also nice to see the NX-01 developing new capabilities, though of course the whole "phase cannon" thing doesn't really make a lot of sense. Ships of this era should have laser cannon and atomic weapons as their primary armament. Why not just call them lasers instead of phase cannon?

It's typical of Enterprise's approach to making the ship more primitive than that TOS/TNG ships, which is to make the technology do exactly the same things in exactly the same ways whilst calling it by ever so slightly different names. So they're not phaser cannon, they're phase cannon. And apparently that makes all the difference.

I also have to say, if they're going to make a CGI alien then why stick to something humanoid? Agreed that these don't look like "man in a suit" aliens, but why not go all out and give us something genuinely different? Seems like a lost opportunity.

Still, the episode is reasonably effective, and all in all it's a decent effort.
Copyright Graham Kennedy Page views : 18,784 Last updated : 4 Dec 2017